Saturday, 14 September 2013

Boat Race 2: A Political Parable

The champions of the regional boat race championship were invited to the annual International Boat race. China representing Asia, Ghana representing Africa, Iran representing the Middle East, Russia representing Europe, USA representing North and South America.

Each country set out on the task of designing a boat for the prestigious race. News began to filter in on various international papers and on social media that four Chinese Scientist had designed a boat called 'The Dragon' which traveled at twice the speed of sound. The USA promptly convinced three of the four said Scientist to defect and steal the blueprints for the boat. Minor modifications were made on the blueprints and at a well attended press conference, the US officials announced they had invented a boat called 'The Dragonfly' which moved at twice the speed of sound. They also took the opportunity to accuse Russia of trying to steal their blueprints. An accusation the Russian officials vehemently denied.

The Chinese government who understandably were incensed by this development immediately put in place a national media blackout. All social media sites were blocked and all Internet traffic was scrutinized. They then set out on developing a new boat which was shrouded in lots of secrecy.

Iran pulled out of the race after the US lodged a complaint to the organizers about the boat the Iranians used in their regional championship which was nuclear powered. An angered Iranian cleric was on Al Jazeera saying Iran didn't want anything to do with 'The Great Satan'.

Meanwhile, back in Ghana, officials were at a three-day conference at an plush hotel discussing their plans and strategy for the upcoming boat race. After a two hour delay, a popular musician performed at the opening day and the conference finally was underway. At the end of the three days, the officials decided to take a loan from the USA and use the money to buy a boat from China which would be captained by a Lebanese. The officials, of course, took home hefty per diem.

The Russians decided that they didn't need to design a new boat. The boat used for the regional championship was good enough for the international championship. The old boat was simply called 'The Boat'.

Finally, the much awaited day of the race arrived. The Chinese unveiled a new remote-controlled boat which they called 'Red Moon'. The Red Moon traveled three times the speed of sound and also doubled as a submarine. The USA brought out The Dragonfly which was painted in stripes of Red with scattered white stars. The Dragonfly had a four man crew. A captain, a co-captain and two cabin crews. The Ghanaian team unveiled a Luxury Yacht, called The Black Shark, bought from China with a loan from the USA. The team was made up of seven people one being the Lebanese who was the Captain, Engineer and Navigator. The other six, who were Ghanaians (who did absolutely nothing) came with their family members and two assistants each.

The 100 kilometers race finally began and in a matter of seconds, the Red Moon, the Chinese boat was at the finish line, the Americans in the Dragonfly arrived a few minutes later and the Russians in the Boat arrived about 30 minutes later. One hour after the Russians arrived, the Ghanaians were still nowhere to be found.

The US team, meanwhile was piling pressure on the judges and officials to disqualify the Chinese. According to the team's dapper lawyer, the Red Moon was technically not a boat but a UFO as it was not man-manned. Various experts were brought in to testify on their behalf. The poor judges, overwhelmed by all the technical details, finally decided to disqualify the Chinese much to the fans' disgust.

Two hours after the protests were over, the Ghanaian Yacht, could be heard but not seen approaching the finish line. There was a party on board the Black Shark and the music was so loud it drowned the announcer's speaker even though the boat was still 5 kilometers in the water. Finally, the Ghanaian luxury yacht arrived on the finish line, still in party mood. The leader of the team quickly organized a press conference at which he stated that they were proud of their achievement and of completing the race. According to him, their performance this year was something to be proud of. It broke the national (Ghanaian) record and marked a massive improvement in their performance in last year's race. They were looking forward to next year's.

The medals podium: first USA, second Russia, third Ghana and China, disqualified.  

The Black Shark

Disclaimer: This story is a work of fiction. Names, characters and incidents are either a product of the author's imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.   

This post is a sequel to another post on this blog, Boat Race.